RadioPlanner 2.1 is RF planning tool for:

- GSM / WCDMA / CDMA / UMTS / LTE mobile networks


- TETRA / P25 / DMR / dPMR / NXDN / GSM-R /McWiLL land mobile radio networks


- Networks based on wireless IoT LPWAN technologies: LoRa and others

- DVB-H / DVB-T / DVB-T2 / ISDB-T / ATSC / DAB / DAB+ terrestrial radio and television broadcast networks

- Air-to-ground communication systems and radionavigation operating in the VHF, UHF and microwave frequencies (Air-to-ground radio, ADS-B, VOR, DME etc.)

This video is a bit old, not all the features are shown, a detailed description of the current version is in the  User Manual

RadioPlanner 2.1 uses the following propagation models:

-    ITU-R P.1812-4 model (for mobile and broadcasting)
-    Longley-Rice (ITM) model v 1.2.2 (for broadcasting only, for mobile coming soon)
-    ITU-R P.1546-6 model  (for broadcasting only)
-    Combined ITU-R P.528-3 + P.526-14 model (for aeronautical radio only)

RadioPlanner 2.1 performs various types of area studies for mobile networks:
-    Received Power uplink/downlink
-    Strongest Server (Best Server)
-    C/I ratio
-    Area with Signal above Both the Base and Mobile Thresholds
-    Number of servers above uplink


Area studies for terrestrial radio and television broadcast transmitters:
-    Field Strength at the Receiver Location
-    Strongest Server (Best Server);
-    FCC contours
-    Calculation of the population in the coverage area based on the OpenStreetMap project database
-    Generation of the list of localities covered by broadcasting


Area studies for air-to-ground communication systems:
-    Received power Air-to-Ground link
-    Received power Ground-to-Air link
-    Strongest (most likely) Server Air-to-Ground link

RadioPlanner allows you to do:
-    Frequency planning of radio networks considering co-channel and adjacent channels interference
-    Points calculation showing the profile of the path, losses, and levels of the signal and interference on co-channel and adjacent channels
-    Import the measurement results of the received signal power levels for comparison with calculated values and adjust propagation model parameters
-    Save the result of the coverage calculation as an interactive web page or as a raster image
-    Flexibly adjust the layers on the base map, show custom vector layers

 

 

GIS features:
-    SRTM-3 dataset is used as a digital terrain model. Data sources: USGS EarthExplorer site https://earthexplorer.usgs.gov
-    Landcover model with the different types of clutter (dense urban, urban, suburban, open land, water, and trees/forest). Landcover model was created based on OpenStreetMap (www.openstreetmap.org) и Global Forest Change (www.earthenginepartners.appspot.com) projects; Built-in RadioPlanner a simple and easy to use Clutter Editor will allow the user to prepare their own clutter model based on new satellite imagery
-    Any kinds of basemaps—both common (such as OpenStreetMap, OpenTopoMap, etc.) and custom ones
 

Received power_ld.png

Received Power 

best server_ld.png

Strongest Server

point_ld.png

Point Calculations

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Measurement Analysis

 

Received Power Uplink

 

Strongest Server (Best Server)

C/I Ratio

 

Point Calculations

RadioPlanner 2.1 Coverage as web page.pn

Coverage saved as web page (clickable)

 

Measurement Analysis

Clutter model

Clutter Editor

 

Population Coverage for TV broadcasting

Bert Rushford​  |  Principle Consultant
Obsidian Consulting, LLC

Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA

May 21, 2019

Obsidian Consulting, LLC has been evaluating RadioPlanner 2.1 software for about two weeks.  We limited our testing to 700/800mHz P25 and analog Land Mobile Radio (“LMR”) systems. Our primary evaluator has been designing and implementing LMR systems for 30 years.  Part of that 30-year tenure was with Motorola where he helped Motorola develop its own proprietary LMR propagation modeling software.  Our other consulting engineers also have decades of LMR system design experience.  As a team, we are very impressed with RadioPlanner 2.1’s features, functionality, accuracy, and ease of use!  A word of caution – “ease of use” is a relative term.  If you are an experienced LMR engineer you will find it easy to navigate and populate the software’s data fields and generate your first propagation map.  If not, RadioPlanner is intuitive enough that trial and error will get you positive results.


RadioPlanner 2.1 offers many useful features to provide accurate LMR propagation modeling.  Two of our favorites are: 1) the point calculation; and, 2) the co-channel carrier to interference ratio (“C/I”) and carrier to adjacent channel ratio (“C/A”) tools.  The point calculation provides a point-to-point (“PTP”) terrain path profile calculation, with terrain view, between the selected LMR site and any point within the LMR coverage area of interest.  This built-in PTP feature is nice to further analyze areas of weak LMR coverage and visually see why the area falls below the desired threshold.  It is also a great tool to use during client presentations as the path profile illustrates path obstructions that degrade the RF signal; which audience members’ can easily understand.  This PTP calculation can be performed on the fly in a matter of seconds – again great for client presentations.  The C/I and C/A tools are useful for modeling multi-channel trunking systems.  For us, this great a great feature, as most of our system designs are 700/800mHz trunking systems.  The program allows easy entry of all the LMR’s trunking frequencies and demonstrates how co-channels and adjacent-channels could impact the LMR trunking system’s performance.  These are just two of our favorite RadioPlanner 2.1 features but the program offers many other beneficial features such as, to name a few; 1) uplink and downlink signal strength coverages maps, 2) coverage maps of areas where the signal strengths are above both the LMR site and the subscriber’s threshold; and, 3) the ability to save your work as a KMZ file.  The program can also calculate various, user selectable, clutter losses and easily allows for demonstrating in-building coverage losses.  


As part of our assessment, we also tested RadioPlaner 2.1’s predicted coverage against the actual coverage produced by two active LMR trunking systems.  One is a 700mHz P25 LMR, digital only, trunking system and the other one is an 800mHz analog LMR trunking system.  We did not perform an exhaustive coverage test as we would during a formal LMR coverage acceptance test.  Instead, we programmed two portable radios and selected locations, within the predicted coverage area, that exhibited less than desirable coverage.  We then drove to the selected areas and initiated multiple push-to-talks while overserving the radios received signal strength.  What we discovered is that the predicted coverage paralleled the actual coverage for both the 700mHz and 800mHz systems extremely well.  We would be very confident using RadioPlanner to model and define LMR site selection for wide-area multi-site 700/800mHz systems; and/or, single-site systems.  


Based, on our relatively short assessment, there are two items that would be nice-to-have.  One nice-to-have would be a clickable zoom-in zoom-out function displayed on the coverage map’s output similar to those found in Google Earth or Google maps.  It would also be useful if the zoom-out/zoom-in function remained focused on the area of interest rather than having to pan back to the area of interest.  There is a pull-down menu you can click to change the coverage map’s eye-level view or you can also use your mouse’s scroll knob to provide an equivalent function; but, you still need to pan back to the area of interest.  The other nice-to-have would be a data field to add system gain derived from a tower top amplifier (“TTA”) on LMR base station’s (“Station”) receive side.  Fortunately, the program allows a different set of parameter to be used for the station’s transmit and receive antenna systems.  As such, you can set the station’s receive antenna system to any height, be it equal to or not to the transmit antenna’s height, and zero out the receive coaxial line losses if your system is utilizing a TTA.  You can also lower the station’s receive threshold if your system uses a TTA. The program also has a diversity gain data field in the station’s parameters that may accomplish the same results as having a dedicated TTA input gain field.  But, we did not experiment with the diversity gain input during our evaluation.  We set our station’s receive side line loss to zero.  


These are very minor items and the program’s excellent performance greatly out ways these nice-to-haves.  Overall we would strongly recommend this program to anyone interested in a very nicely designed, flexible and multi-faceted RF propagation modeling tool.  We also note that RadioPlanner’s email tech support was excellent even though their tech support is several hours ahead of us.